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New Mexico

Historic Old Town

This "Original Albuquerque" saw its beginning 70 years before the American Revolution when King Philip of Spain gave colonists permission to settle an area of the Rio Grande Valley known today as Old Town. This area, now a historic zone, looks much like it did centuries ago. Activities still center around the picturesque plaza. The first building erected was the church, San Felipe de Neri. Still standing on its original site, the church remains the center of life in Old Town. Settlers built their homes, shops and government offices around the plaza.

The Pueblo-Spanish style architecture, characterized by the use of adobe, makes Old Town a beautiful place to visit. The flat-roofed buildings and their soft contours mirror the Southwestern landscape. Long portals (porches) line the fronts of most buildings. Bancos (benches) are often found built into the back walls of portals so that weary bones can be soothed by the sight of a Southwestern sunset.

Visitors are free to stroll the streets and plazas of Old Town. More than 24 galleries call Old Town home. A wide variety of Southwestern artwork is available including jewelry, sculpture, paintings, weaving and hand-crafted work. Through renovations and new construction, the Old Town area now houses more than 150 stores and fine restaurants.

Old Town Plaza Around the central plaza, Old Town's streets are lined with 300-year old adobe structures
Around the central plaza, Old Town’s streets are lined with 300-year old adobe structures



Document Information
Source: Albuquerque CVB, Marbles Studio
Last modified: 20041005
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